In late August, Park Scholarships staff mail a packet of materials to each of the schools on the Endorsing List. Counselors at these schools should endorse candidates for the Park Scholarships by October 1.
All candidates have until November 1 to submit the required materials.
Why, Who, and How
Why endorse a student for the Park Scholarships?
The Park Scholarships program affords the connectedness of a small community within the setting of a large, resource-rich Research I university. Park Scholars participate in academic and personal enrichment programs designed to enhance the outstanding educational experience they receive at NC State.
- Full scholarship that covers the annual cost of attendance as estimated by NC State's Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid.
- Computer stipend to be used for a computer best suited to student's curricular interests, once s/he arrives on campus.
- Faculty Mentors: Students learn how to identify faculty mentors with whom they collaborate. Mentors encourage students to pursue unique research experiences, to present at professional conferences, and develop their disciplinary expertise.
- Civic Involvement: Park Scholars develop personal service philosophies through participation in volunteer projects over the course of their four years.
- Retreats: First-year students begin their Park Scholarships experience with a three-day retreat in the mountains of North Carolina, then commence their senior year with a retreat to a national park. These retreats foster camaraderie and encourage both reflection and goal-setting.
- Class Trips: Students help plan two Learning Laboratories, one in NC and one in Washington, D.C., securing unparalleled opportunities to meet individuals such as Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas, and former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Hugh Shelton.
- Grants: Students may apply for grants for study abroad, travel to professional conferences, or to support research, service, or creative endeavors.
Who are the best candidates?
Successful candidates have demonstrated success or show potential on the selection criteria. Candidates who have excellent academics but do not excel on other selection criteria (no service or leadership) may not be the best candidates to endorse.
We ask schools to endorse candidates because you know your students best. It takes time to submit materials for the Park Scholarships and only the most outstanding students should be encouraged to spend their limited time on them.
We recommend that counselors work with a scholarship committee to select their high school's candidates. Since the application is online, we suggest that counselors ask students to provide a resume, a one-page essay with examples of how they meet the selection criteria, and the names of references they might use. The students will need this information, so it will not create extra work for them. The Park Scholarships program uses the NC State Undergraduate Admissions application and asks students to provide two essays, transcripts, and two recommendations as supplementary information.
Counselors then endorse students online using the WolfPAW system.
Remember, endorsements are due October 1 so that candidates have time to work on their required materials.
Self Endorsement: There are unusual occasions when a student is encouraged to apply directly to the Park Scholarships through the self-endorsement process. These cases might involve a talented home-schooled student, a student at a high school that cannot endorse students, or sometimes a school has an exceptionally strong senior class.
Students who are at endorsing schools must wait until after the school concludes their process in order to self endorse. These students should feel they are at least as qualified as the candidates who were endorsed since the committee will be examining these applications quite carefully.